Go For It!

A time for new beginnings . . .

Shortly after my husband’s death, our son and daughter were talking about some of the best things they had learned from their dad.  They both agreed that one of his most important gifts to them had been his Can-Do attitude.  He practiced this, and he instilled in them a sense that they could do or be anything they set their minds to.

During their college years, I had to admit that their idea of going up to Alaska to earn money during the summers—working on the slime line in canneries, living in tents or working on board small fishing boats in the treacherous waters of the Bering Sea wasn’t my idea of the safest way to earn money.  But their adventurous dad cheered them on.

After our daughter graduated from college and before she enrolled in graduate school, she decided to take a backpacking trip around the world (using some of the money she had earned in Alaska).  She set off alone, equipped only with her backpack and a small tent, working as she went, for one of the best adventures of her life.  She did, indeed, go around the world twice—once in each direction.  It made for some anxiety on our part, but we were proud of her independence, and couldn’t wait to hear all about it.

Early on I had also benefited from my husband’s Can-Do attitude.  When our children were preschoolers, and I was a stay-at-home mom, I confided in him that I had always wanted to be a writer.  Though I had earned a degree in English, I’d had no courses in creative writing.  That year for Christmas he gave me a correspondence course in creative writing from the University of Minnesota.  It was his way of saying, “You can do it.  Go for it!”

This course was the impetus I needed to develop some skills that eventually resulted in my selling hundreds of magazine articles—a dream I would probably never have had the courage to pursue without his encouragement.

So my point is this:  It’s a NEW YEAR, a time of new beginnings.  Dare to try something new.  Maybe for you it’s a quilt you’ve always wanted to make.  An ancestry study.  A college course you’ve been meaning to take.  Hot-air ballooning.  Volunteering at a hospital or nursing home.

Now is the time.  Go for it!

©Sharon Sheppard